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What do you enjoy most about substance abuse counselor work? What do you dislike the most? Is it challenging? Are there many opportunities to learn and advance?

What keeps you at your job?

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Lou in Killeen, Texas

84 months ago

that isn't an easy answer, I sort of just fell into it. I feel good at the end of the day knowing I made a difference but understanding the first step is not mine but theres. Working the same steps they work just at a different level. It is very challenging. One of the hardest parts is not becoming attached, but that is also a learned behavior. Dislike, is understanding that not everyone is working an honest program and the realization of that makes a huge difference as well. This career doesn't pay alot so liking what you do is of the utmost importance. A higher degree will get you more money as well as experience. IN the state of TX I'm not worth much as I am not LCDC. I really feel the bar is to high just help SA and Alcoholics. At some level I know that I am more than quailified to help!

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meretta newby in College Park, Maryland

76 months ago

Host said: What do you enjoy most about substance abuse counselor work? What do you dislike the most? Is it challenging? Are there many opportunities to learn and advance?

What keeps you at your job?

What I like most about the job of substance abuse counseling is the one thing that has been taken out of the equation: helping people. When we loose focus on that fact, we loose the the true desire to give to others. thus the operative is lost, that thing that makes all things happen. What I dislike about the job is that so many people assume that the better counselors are the ones in recovery, so not true. The thing that keeps me in the profession is that which is operative in me, my desire to help others.

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Kelcey in Eugene, Oregon

75 months ago

I have been reading "Substance Abuse Counseling, Theory and Practice" by Stevens. I was just reading something about the topic tonight. The book says this about good qualities in substance abuse counselors:

"Effective group leaders tend to possess the following characteristics: presence in the 'here and now,' personal power, or self-efficacy, courage, willingness to engage in reflection, capacity for self-disclosure, authenticity, stable sense of identity, creativity, enthusiasm, and belief in group process."

These were in relation to group counseling I guess, not just overall counseling of addicts/alcoholics. There were other things listed too, but these were the ones I underlined in my book.

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